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Energy OK after Mubarak

CAIRO, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Conditions at an oil pipeline stretching from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean are normal despite the political uncertainty in Egypt, an energy company said.

The Egyptian military suspended Parliament and the country's constitution following Hosni Mubarak's resignation last week after 30 years as president. Energy prices increased as concerns circulated over shipping lanes in the Suez Canal and key transit networks.

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Arab Petroleum Pipelines Co., owner of the Suez-Mediterranean pipeline, or Sumed, said the 200-mile oil pipeline was operating as expected.

"In fact, Sumed's throughput level during January and February 2011 is expected to be considerably higher than (during the) same period in 2010," the company was quoted by the Platts news service as saying.

Operations through the Suez Canal, meanwhile, are "normal," the company said, noting that, while the situation in Egypt has changed politically, the military has pledged to keep the affairs of the state in order.

Sumed typically carries about 1.1 million barrels of crude oil per day. The Suez Canal handles more than 1.5 million barrels of crude and refined products each day.

The International Energy Agency said during the height of the unrest in Egypt that though there could be delays in shipping, oil and gas volumes were expected to hold steady.

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